Contributory Negligence in UK Law

Leading Cases
  • Froom v Butcher
    • Court of Appeal
    • 21 Jul 1975

    Negligence depends on a breach of duty, whereas contributory negligence does not. Negligence is a man's carelessness in breach of duty to others. Contributory negligence is a man's carelessness in looking after his own safety. He is guilty of contributory negligence if he ought reasonably to have foreseen that, if he did not act as a reasonable prudent man he might be hurt himself, see Jones v. Livox Quarries (1952) 2 Q.B. 608.

  • O'Connell v Jackson
    • Court of Appeal
    • 07 Jul 1971

    Giving the bestconsideration that we can to the whole matter, we assess the responsibility of the plaintiff In terms of 15 per cent, of the whole, and allow the appeal to the extent of reducing the damages to that extent.

  • National Coal Board v England
    • House of Lords
    • 25 Feb 1954

    The act must, I should have supposed, at least be a step in the execution of the common illegal purpose If two burglars, A and B, agree to open a safe by means of explosives, and A so negligently handles the explosive charge as to injure B, B might find some difficulty in maintaining an action for negligence against A.

  • Staveley Iron and Chemical Company Ltd v Jones
    • House of Lords
    • 31 Ene 1956

  • Bonnington Castings Ltd v Wardlaw
    • House of Lords
    • 01 Mar 1956

    What is a material contribution must be a question of degree. A contribution which comes within the exception de minimis non curat lex is not material, but I think that any contribution which does not fall within that exception must be material. I do not see how there can be something too large to come within the de minimis principle but yet too small to be material.

  • Stapley v Gypsum Mines Ltd
    • House of Lords
    • 25 Jun 1953

    One must discriminate between those faults which must be discarded as being too remote and those which must not. Sometimes it is proper to discard all but one and to regard that one as the so'e cause, but in other cases it is proper to regard two or more as having jointly caused the accident.

    A Court must deal broadly with the problem of apportionment and in considering what is just and equitable must have regard to the blameworthiness of each party, but "the claimant's share in the responsibility for the damage" cannot, I think, be assessed without considering the relative importance of his acts in causing the damage apart from his blameworthiness.

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